Metal Wani's Chuck Marshall recently conducted an interview with TESTAMENT frontman Chuck Billy. You can now listen to the chat below.
Asked if it's going to take TESTAMENT another four years to release the follow-up to 2016's "Brotherhood Of The Snake" album, Billy said: "No, no, no. Our goal is two years. We hope to have a record out next year. Because we thought we'd have a record out after two years; it just ended up being four, because the process just… I don't know what happened, but it took forever. So this time, like, you know what? I don't wanna do that again. I told Eric [Peterson, guitar] exactly when we were done recording. I said, 'You know what? It's a great record now, but I don't wanna go through what I had to go through to do this again. So why don't we start writing now?' So we decided that when we're not on the road, let's get together and just jam and maybe come up and at least get to that point where we were with this record — a bunch of ideas and riffs and lyrics."
Billy also talked about TESTAMENT's longevity and enduring influence on younger metal bands. He said: "I think we've stayed true to what we've done from the '80s up to where we are today. There's a lot of music changes and industry changes and radio and MTV and the whole format, everything's changed from when we began to where we are today, but through all that, I think we've stayed true to what we do and our style and what we want to play, and somehow I think the fan appreciates that. Most bands either stop playing or they try to conform to what's current and people are buying. And I don't think bands could make it that long, 'cause I don't know… It's not real."
According to Billy, part of the reason TESTAMENT has managed to thrive after being in the business for more than thirty years is the fact that "we never copied ourselves [musically]." He explained: "You know it's TESTAMENT, but we haven't copied… 'Oh, that's their last record,' 'Oh, that's 'Practice [What You Preach]'.' We're always kind of evolving, but you know it's TESTAMENT. You're kind of going, 'Cool, man. It's a different feeling or a different vibe this song's hit me. So I think that has something to do with it as well."
"Brotherhood Of The Snake" was released last October via Nuclear Blast. The cover was once again created by renowned artist Eliran Kantor, who also handled the art for the TESTAMENT's previous album, 2012's "Dark Roots Of Earth", and worked with bands like HATEBREED, SOULFLY and KATAKLYSM in the past.
"Brotherhood Of The Snake" was recorded under the watchful eyes of producer Juan Urteaga (EXODUS, HEATHEN, MACHINE HEAD),guitarist Eric Peterson and Billy and was mixed and mastered by British metal producer Andy Sneap (ACCEPT, ARCH ENEMY, CRADLE OF FILTH, KREATOR, MACHINE HEAD, MEGADETH).